One last thing from the Expo: music store divisions

So Phil Schiller showed this new iPod ad, and like all the best DJs he even back-announced what the song was (because that’s often what you really want to know after seeing one of those ads: what was that fantastic, catchy tune?). “Ain’t that great? The song is ‘Walkie Talkie Man’ by Steriogram and it’s available right now on the iTunes Music Store,” he said.

That it may be, but it’s not available on the European iTMS – at least not unless they’ve added it overnight. A link to the US store comes up as the third result of this search and yet the stupidity of record labels mean we can hear the song over here, but not buy it.

Gotta love those record guys. “Which internet do they have in Europe, anyway?”


  1. Another reason you can blame record labels for good or bad. Because different artists are signed to different labels in different territories AND/OR this band is not even signed to a label in Europe AND/OR this label does not have an agreement with Apple in Europe. Add in the convoluted Euro copyright/digital rights holders situation that differ from country to country even though they are mostly in the EU – you can see where the bureacrats have created problems that even Apple can’t get around easily.

  2. Europe is a very scary market for labels, because of the way they interpret copyright laws. One common loophole in the European Union regarding performance rights manifest itself as Live Albums. An artist plays to the public there, someone ELSE can record it, press it, and legitimately make money from selling that recording. The artist may be slightly miffed, but the labels get REALLY miffed!!

    So often a song doesn’t enter that market until more protection is put into place somehow.

  3. Sorry, Friendly Reader, but you’re wrong – every gig I’ve ever been to (all in Europe) has a clause on the ticket saying that unauthorised recording isn’t allowed. Bootleg discs may be plentiful, but it’s an underground business. The labels don’t get miffed – but the artists do, and if their manager or heavies discover you trying to record something off the sound desk or in the crowd, the very least you can expect is ejection, and possibly a search for a few teeth too.

    Really, it’s not about “live” stuff. It is what jbelkin said – very complex licensing.

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